This recipe is based off a GF pita recipe I used bake in October when making a traditional Greek meal GF (find recipe here). I highly recommend giving both this bun recipe and the pita recipe a try because there both definite keepers! Infact I recommend making them in large batches and freezing them (uncooked, they will still rise after being thawn). Or, mix up the drys in batches ahead of time, so that it will be quicker when you go to make either these recipes (note the pita recipe has 1/2 cup more Oat Flour).
These date squares won second place in my local fair. Yes these GLUTEN FREE date squares won 4TH PLACE against all wheat made date squares! So rest assure that not only did this recipe win a ribbon but it won it over many glutenous versions. So I hope you too enjoy it as much, or more that the judges did.
Also I hope you appreciate my pun in choosing "date" squares for my valentine's day recipe post, the day where a lot of people go on "dates!"
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the dates and water. Bring to a boil, and cook until thickened. Stir in lemon juice, and remove from heat. Puree.
In a large bowl, combine oats, flours, salt, brown sugar, and baking soda. Mix in butter until crumbly. Press half of the mixture into the bottom of a 9" square baking pan.
Spread half the crisp in the pan and press firmly. Layer with the date mixture. Cover with the remaining crisp and press lightly. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the crisp is golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack completely. Unmould and cut into 9 to 16 squares.
1 batch prepared Puff Pastry see recipe here
500g Ground meat of your choice
1 tsp. Sage
1 tsp. Thyme
1 tsp. Parsley
1/2 tsp. Red pepper flakes, crushed
1 cup Apples, minced
2 tbsp. Honey
Salt & Pepper to your tastes
1-2 Egg yolk(s)
Using a fork gently combine all ingredients but egg yolk(s). Form into 1 inch (2-3 cm) wide cylinders. Set aside and refrigerate.
Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C).
Remove the prepared puff pastry from the fridge after the fourth turn. Roll out in to a rectangle until 1/2 inch (1-1.5 cm) thick. Cut into 3 inch wide strips. Lay the sausage 1/2 inch (1 cm) away from the edge, all along the length of the strips. You should half a little over one half of the dough strip's width uncovered with sausage. Fold over uncovered dough to cover sausage and using a fork pinch the edge shut. Cut length to desired size and place on a cookie sheet to bake. Brush with egg yolk(s). Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown and sausage is cooked through.
Making homemade pastry, be it puff, flaky, choux, etc., is a definite skill that is only perfected with practice. Pastry of any kind is possibly the hardest item to make gluten free, I dare say "much harder than bread." Also, likely for this reason, one of the more rare prepackages GF items to find in a store. This can cause server withdrawal for this who loved to go their local bakery and buy a danish, sausage rolls, or crescents rolls prior to staring a GF lifestyle. Well this recipe, like all pastries takes some dedication to prefect, but trust me it will be worth it in the end.
From my experience there are three keys to pastry:
READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING
First combine into a container, with a tight fitting lid:
MAKING THE DOUGH
Sift into a food processor:
THE BUTTER PACKET
Cut into 1/2-inch cubes and freeze for 5 minutes:
ROLLING THE PASTRY
Remove the dough square from the refrigerator (leaving the butter packet in the refrigerator) and place on a sheet of lightly floured parchment paper (or wax paper or plastic wrap). Flour the top of the dough square and place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough. Roll out dough into a 13x8-inch rectangle, with the 8-inch side facing you. Brush off excess flour. Remove butter packet from the refrigerator, unwrap it, center it on one half the dough. Fold the over the butter, completely covering it (remove the top sheet of parchment paper and try lifting the bottom sheet half way the loosen dough). Turn the dough so that the folded edge is on the left, with one of the sealed sides (where the dough was pressed together) on the right, to change the direction for the next roll.
Flour as needed from here on. Place the top sheet of parchment paper back on. Roll the dough package into a 17x7 1/2-inch rectangle, keeping a short facing you. Slide a metal dough scraper or spatula or a large knife under the bottom of third of the third of the dough and fold it up over the center of the dough. Slide the knife under to third of the dough and fold it down on the top of the first third, as though you were folding a business letter. This rolling and folding is called a single turn.
Rotate the dough so that the folded edge is on the left, and roll the dough out once more into a 17x7 1/2-inch rectangle. This time fold the bottom end up and the top end down to meet the center (do not overlap), then fold the dough in half, to make 4 layers of dough. This double fold is the second turn. Mark your dough with two finger imprints to remind you that you have given the dough two turns. Wrap up the dough and refrigerate for 45 minutes.
With the folded edge on the left, roll the dough out again to 17x7 1/2-inches. Make another double fold, for the third turn. Mark your dough with three finger imprints, wrap the dough, and refrigerate for 45 minutes.
Roll the dough out and make another double fold for the fourth turn. Mark the dough with 4 finger imprints, wrap, and refrigerate for at least an hour before using.
Christmas isn't over yet! Not all countries celebrate Christmas on December 25th, according to timeanddate.com 147 countries celebrated Christmas on Friday, December 25th. That means that 49 countries do not celebrate Christmas on the 25th!
The fact that approximately one quarter of the countries did not celebrate on the same day as that other three quarters is not at all astounding, after all, no one knows on what day Jesus was truly born (though some may have educated guesses).
I take this knowledge that not everyone on earth is finished celebrating the incarnate birth of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ yet as a reassurance. It reminds me that no matter what some where someone is still or waiting to celebrate this blessed day, and that even after the one day passes I should still praise Him the remaining 364 days.
In countries where Orthodox Christianity is the prevalent religion they celebrate come January 7th (for another reason this is a very special day to me). Two such countries are Serbia and the Ukraine.
So, for two reasons I'm still posting back logs of Christmas recipes:
1) Christmas is never truly over (after all Jesus is still being born, in the hearts of individuals all across the globe).
2) Internet is so not time sensitive. I am aware that the recipes I find online are rarely just posted but still suit me just the same.
So here's my family's non-alcoholic eggnog recipe!
Makes approx. 12 cups
Merry Christmas to you and yours!
Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipe 1
This comfort food is a traditional French Canadian Christmas pie called: Beef Tourtiere. All though it's called All Beef Tourtiere it's commanally made from a combination of pork and beef, and traditionally with carrier pigeon. But to offer a heartier and healthier alternative I offer my version of this wonderful winter dish, with no pork just beef. However, if you like pork go ahead and use half pork and half beef!
This pie is best suited for the cold seasons because it's loaded with what are termed warming spices. Warming spices are those spices which actually do warm your blood. Here are some examples of warming spices: ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamon, allspice. I offer my humble alternate definition of warming spices: heart warming spices; i.e. those spices which a reminiscent of what mother used to make on a cold day (e.g. applesauce cake, gingerbread, and pumpkin pie)!
Between hearty beef and heart warming spices this is a sure crowd pleaser.
The wonderful array of flavours all coalesce in this warming dish. The ingredients are many but the taste is divinely simple, and in fact the recipe is quite easy to compile.
Anyway enough of my chitter-chatter go ahead try the recipe for yourself, and please when you get a minute let me know what you think of it in the comments below!
Double Crust Pie Dough (SEE RECIPE HERE)
2 lb. Ground Beef (Blade Roast is adds a deep beef flavour!)
1 medium Onion, Diced
3 sm. Cloves Garlic, Minced
1/4 cup Celery, Diced
1 1/2 cup Beef Au Jus Sauce or Beef Gravy
3/4 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black pepper
6 Whole Cloves or 1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Sage
3/4 cup Mashed Potatoes
1/4 cup Lightly Packed, Fresh GF Bread Crumbs
Preheat an oven to 400F. Roll the pastry dough into 2 equal-sized circles to fit a 9-inch pie pan. Line the bottom of the pie pan with 1 circle and set aside the prepared pie pan and remaining pastry for later.
Using a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat and sauté the beef, onion, garlic, and celery until the vegetables are tender and the meat is mostly cooked.
Drain any excess fat from the pan. Add the beef stock, herbs, and spices to the meat and vegetables; simmer the mixture over low-medium heat, covered, for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove the skillet from the heat and stir the mashed potatoes and dry breadcrumbs into the mixture. Allow the meat filling to sit for 3 minutes. Spoon the filling into the prepared pie pan and top with the remaining pastry dough. Crimp the dough shut, flute the edges, cut vents in the top, and bake the pie for 12 minutes. Reduce the oven heat to 350F and continue baking the pie for 25 to 30 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown.
If you used one cake pan then cut the height of the cake into equal thirds. To cut a cake into three layers, first measure the height of the cake with a ruler. Divide the number by three to determine the height of each layer. (It's okay if each layer's height isn't exactly the same…make them as close as possible.) With the ruler, mark the height of the bottom layer with a toothpick. From that toothpick, measure the height of the middle layer and mark with a toothpick. Continue measuring around the cake, inserting toothpicks every few inches. Using the highest set of toothpicks as guides, cut off the top layer of the cake with a long serrated knife. Carefully set aside. Using the remaining toothpicks as guides, cut off the middle layer; carefully set aside. Discard toothpicks.
Bring to a boil 1/2 cup cherry juice and 1/3 sugar. Boil uncovered over medium heat for 5 minutes. Cool to lukewarm, add 1 tsp imitation brandy extract.
Place one layer on your serving plate.
♥ CHOCOLATE CREAM METHOD ♥
Bring to a boil water. Add 8 oz. chopped chocolate. Stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Whip in a large bowl (holding capacity of at least 8 cups) whip cream and sugar until soft peaks form.
Fold in 1/3 cup whipped cream into chocolate mixture, then fold in another 1/2 cup. Immediately, arrange a single layer of without packing them tightly, on top; you will have some cherries leftover. Quickly spread the chocolate cream over the first layer of moistened cake.
Place the last layer moist side down on top of the second layer. Press gently to level. Moisten top of layer with more cherry syrup.
Top the black forest cake with any leftover whipped cream and/or cherries. Use a spatula to smooth whipped cream out on side of the cake. With the grated chocolate pat on the side of the cake and sprinkle the top of the cake.
Refrigerate the cake for at least 12 hours, or up to 24 hours, before serving.
When it came so did a side of creativity. I took a few bites of my sausage and realized that this plate of sausage, fried eggs, broad cheddar cheese, lettuce, and tomato slices could easily be turned in to a GF sandwich with cheese bread! How so? Simple layer a slice of cheese with one egg, one slice tomato, one leaf lettuce and top with another slice of cheese. Now you have a fried egg sandwiched in cheese! It turned out grand, the cheese held together up until the very last bite. Go ahead try it next time you're out, almost all restaurants have these basic items. Just make sure the egg isn't too hot when you compile your sandwich r the cheese will begin to melt.
Remember gluten free doesn't mean your limited you're free! So use a little creativity and you'll enjoy your meals a lot more.
Sincerely, Tamara Green
1/2 cup, packed Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Molasses
1/4 cup Honey
1 large Egg, room temperature
2 cups Brown Rice Flour
1 1/3 cup + 2 tsp Tapioca Starch/Flour
1/3 cup + 2 tsp Potato Starch
1/4 cup Teff Flour
1/4 cup Whey, Hemp, or Non-GMO Soy Protein
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Ginger powder
1/2 tsp Cinnamon, ground
1/4 tsp Cloves, ground
1/4 tsp Allspice, ground
1/2 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Black Pepper (for spicy cookies!)
1/4 cup Water
2 tsp freshly grated Ginger Root, peeled
In a medium bowl, sift together the flours, baking soda, spices, and salt & pepper. Add half of the flour mixture to the sugar mixture, mixing on low speed until just combined, scrape down the side of the bowl and/or paddle as is needed. Pour in the water and grated ginger, and mix to combine. Add the remaining flour and mix until fully combined.
Divide the dough into two pieces (it's going to be sticky), and shape into a ball, wrap each in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours, or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350f (175C). Have ready parchment- or wax paper-lined baking sheets.
On a well floured board, roll out one piece of dough to 1/8 thick (for a very soft cookie roll out to 1/4" thick). As long as you work quickly and keep the dough dusted with flour, it shouldn't be hard to work with. If the dough gets too warm it will be come sticky, if this happens just pop it back into the fridge to cool a bit (approx. 30 minutes). Using cookie cutters, cut out cookies into desired shapes and place on prepared baking sheets. Repeat with the other half of the dough. Scraps may be re-rolled and cut, up to two more times.